Anger is a more complex emotion than people sometimes understand, and has layers to it that it can be helpful to pull apart in a therapeutic setting. Our anger stems from deeper feelings that we struggle to acknowledge and process, and it’s role is to help us feel powerful when our deeper feelings are compromised.
Who Struggles with Anger?
According to research by Okuda, et al., The overall prevalence of inappropriate, intense, or poorly controlled anger in the U.S. population was 7.8%. Anger was especially common among men and younger adults, and was associated with decreased psychosocial functioning.
How Therapy Can Help
In counseling a person can access their understanding of when anger played a role in their life, and how they learned the patterns of behavior that informed their own anger reactions. This can provide one lens to understand and begin to deprogram how anger functions internally, and how it is expressed externally.
Anger can sometimes be the result of an inability to cope with anxiety, depression, shifting mood, or issues with concentration. Learning about the deeper root issues informing the anger can help individuals decrease the amount of triggering circumstances that are activating the anger. Coping skills can be learned as well, to use for short term alleviation of anger symptoms while working to process the larger issues prompting anger responses.